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Deputy PM says relying on tourism is “unacceptable”

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Thailand’s deputy PM says that relying too much on tourism is “unacceptable.” In Supattanapong Punmeechaow’s speech, he said that the tourism industry will never be allowed to recover to its previous levels.

For years, Amazing Thailand was the nation’s slogan, which brought in $56.2 billion in 2019 alone, but after Covid struck, it is clear that there has been a major policy shift in thinking by PM Prayut’s cabinet.

As the nation’s travel and tourism industry accounts for up to 20% of GNP and around 10% of all jobs, the revelation is troublesome for the country’s investors and property developers, which may see no point in continuing to build up Thailand with more hotels, if the industry may never see a repeat of the 39 million+ tourists that arrived in 2019.

The deputy PM admitted that the Covid outbreak exposed cracks and flaws in the economy.

“The Covid-19 outbreak that hit Thailand since April has exposed the fragility of the economy and shed light on the fact that we rely too much on export and tourism.”

At the “Restart Thailand 2021” dinner talk held at Siam Paragon shopping complex in Bangkok he pointed to the toll that the virus has taken on small and medium businesses in which the government took action to help curb the effect that the virus had on such establishments by postponing debt repayment and aid measures.

“However, from July onwards, economic indicators have been pointing toward an improving trend thanks to cooperation from all parties in outbreak prevention, despite some minor impact from the political situations.”

“The tourism industry has shown improvement, with about 30% occupation, jumping from just 6 per cent in April, thanks to the government’s economic stimulus campaigns such as the ‘Let’s Go Halves’ shopping subsidy.”

“Through the Thai Credit Guarantee Corporation, the government is also planning to provide an additional 150 billion baht in loans to help small and medium businesses.”

“It is unacceptable to let Thailand slide back to the period before Covid-19. Since the global economy is changing we must be more proactive in attracting foreign investors, and the agencies responsible for this are the Board of Investment Office and Eastern Economic Corridor Office.”

“The next step will be to put Thailand on the list of top 10 countries with ease of doing business, which is a goal proposed by 5 countries who are our major trade partners.”

The deputy PM says this year the government will focus on investing in new industries that will help reduce reliance on export and tourism.

“Bangkok will be the centre of regional offices of multinational companies, while Thailand’s automotive industry will focus on the manufacturing of electric vehicles.”

“EVs will create other related industries such as smart equipment manufacturing and electricity generating from renewable energy. This will create a great opportunity for Thailand to further invest in community power plants, as well as biomass and solar power plants in Laos.”

SOURCE: Chiang Rai Times

 

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79 Comments

79 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Veejay

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 11:25 am

    There are many opportunities for a digital transformation of public service, including reskilling to be prepared for the gig economy. DEPA definitely can take the lead here.

    • Avatar

      Chadimua

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 12:26 pm

      Most Thais outside of BKK can’t speak a full sentence of English nor have the critical thinking skills do much more than scan at 7-11. Thailand hasn’t invested in education. You don’t get knowledge workers in a year. It takes one or more generations to make the transition.

      • Avatar

        Issan John

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:01 pm

        Exactly. … and the recent “investment” in education is designed to do anything but change that, despite the rhetoric.

      • Avatar

        Mike Frenchie

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:03 pm

        Absolutely (thanks for saving me the effort to write that)

    • Avatar

      John Brown

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:10 pm

      This is an important direction to attempt a pivot, yes, but widely-deployed gig economies without a strong social safety net (paid for largely by that economy’s service providers) will cause more problems than they solve, particularly in economies where the service workers are not paid enough to afford the services they provide.

      The safer solutions are pivots back to surplus-export agriculture (not export-oriented agriculture), international medical services, and advanced manufacturing. We’ve already been making headway on the manufacturing revamp but need more serious attention to agriculture and medical, as well as where they overlap (the Buri Ram model intrinsically makes sense but the kind of regulatory capture and cronyism it’s being saddled with will undo any benefit to the country – to put it mildly – if they aren’t careful).

      • Avatar

        Issan John

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:53 pm

        ” … back to surplus-export agriculture (not export-oriented agriculture), …”

        Can’t agree with you there, John B, unless you’re priority’s being self-sufficient and insular as a country.

        “Surplus-export agriculture” means selling whatever you have spare in the hope that someone wants it.

        “Export-oriented agriculture” means selling whatever will bring in the best profit.

        Why, in a free market economy rather than North Korea, would anyone do the former not the latter?

        • Avatar

          John Brown

          Monday, January 4, 2021 at 2:59 am

          Surplus-export means greater supply chain resilience, your following questions answer themselves if you understand this one but go read a macro textbook if you don’t, I’m done explaining simple concepts to you when you don’t even do the background reading (eg when I explained the difference between a color coded alert system and a color zoning system and your thoughts on that topic continued to be so muddled and irrelevant to the actual topic that it was obvious you didn’t do the quick and easy reading you asked me to provide)

  2. Avatar

    Social Observer

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 11:30 am

    All these Issan girls are going to work in the Electric Vehicles industry ? Good luck with that Supattanapong.

    • Avatar

      s2k

      Tuesday, January 5, 2021 at 8:33 am

      “This will create a great opportunity for Thailand to further invest in community power plants, as well as biomass and solar power plants in Laos.”

      Why do they want to invest in biomass and solar plants, in Laos? There is PLENTY of space and PLENTY of sun, right there in Thailand.

  3. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 11:44 am

    Stupid man
    He can state these things because he has made his money, and is in a good position to make more, under the present system of him being a member of an unopposed dictatorship.
    Stop tourism and foreign investment will dry up.
    All this big talk of power plants, and smart equipment manufacturing – Thais are not capable. Not without foreign investment and expertise. I doubt they will have more after the Thai government’s antics of the last nine months. Few trust the smiling Thai now.

    • Avatar

      gosport

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 11:53 am

      You not trust the smiling Thai, but, golden coconuts and papaya salad are delicious. Tourism only attracts speculative money.

    • Avatar

      Mike

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 12:41 pm

      Yes .. these military thugs with no idea of how economies function. No inward investment to replace those contributors for decade if at all

    • Avatar

      chris

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 1:12 pm

      he didn’ they would “stop tourism” you idiot and i seriously doubt that foreign investment is in any way related to the tourism industry or that anything he’s said here is related to “unopposed dictatorship.”

      ….you said, “not capable without foreign investment and expertise” FROM TOURISTS?

      • Avatar

        Nipral

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:30 pm

        ???????ou are funny ! Keep entertaining us Pal !!!

      • Avatar

        Toby Andrews

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 3:53 pm

        what’s this he didn’t they would “stop tourism”
        Moron.
        Learn to write and then you might learn to read.
        where I am writing that investment is related to tourism, which you seriously doubt?
        Where did I write foreign investment and expertise is from tourists?
        You did read something right. what he said is related to unopposed dictatorship, because an unopposed dictator cannot be removed, therefore he can spout all the rubbish he want, like you.

    • Avatar

      chris

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 1:16 pm

      “All this big talk of power plants, and smart equipment manufacturing – Thais are not capable. Not without foreign investment and expertise”

      FROM TOURISTS? what the hell are you talking about?

    • Avatar

      Roger

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:45 pm

      Very very true these MP are all Millionaires

      They do not care about the poor in Thailand

      If they cared to give half their wealth to the poor
      Let the king give half his wealth and buy Thailand from the Chinese ..hahahahah

      • Avatar

        Manuel Antonio

        Monday, January 4, 2021 at 5:55 am

        I consider investing in other industries and agree to what he says but I really don’t understand why they are not considering tourism as other major tourist attraction countries are thinking of such as UAE, European nations and many others. I think Thai government has forgotten about how good they are in the tourism industry and my recommendation would be they should add more to their tourism because that is the industry which contributes to 20% of the GNP. I think it’s high time and Thailand should reopen as soon as possible if they are afraid of covid they should consider famine in their nation too in the near future.

  4. Avatar

    Alte Ledertasche

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 11:47 am

    This opportunity is missed already as the Thai education system and quality of education in governmental schools is substandard.
    Where all this skilled workers should come from remains a secret to me but they can employ some more immigrant workers from Myanmar, at least they speak better English and are willing to work.

    • Avatar

      Joker

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 12:50 pm

      Millions of unemployed and uneducated from the tourism industry will now work in the offices of multinational companies in Bangkok? And design and build electric vehicles?
      Joke of the day

      • Avatar

        Rasputin

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 6:19 pm

        Design advanced vehicles? NO, but they certainly CAN build them with current manufacturing methods, how long do you think it takes to train someone to attach a wheel to a car, on a modern production line? 20 mins and a little practice to get up to speed IMO. It requires dexterity, NOT academic ability or a high IQ. Many, many jobs have been deskilled to enable low cost mass production and that won’t be changing or slowing in the future.

    • Avatar

      James Pate

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 1:10 pm

      You got that right.

  5. Avatar

    gosport

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 11:47 am

    That is a good trend in thinking. I am thinking quitting papaya salad business and put more monkeys to my plantation and hire more talents to craft coconut shells. It is hard , Thailand can make it.

    wait and see, maybe property price will go down. I don’t have to suffer in my tent

  6. Avatar

    Chadimua

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 12:28 pm

    Vietnam and Malaysia are far far ahead. Thailand hasn’t invested in education and simply cannot catch up. No matter how much Japanese investment.

  7. Avatar

    Peter

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 12:36 pm

    The GDP growth and economic performance of a country depends essential on the education system.
    Change this first to a modern “western” style system will help a lot to grow GPD , but better educatet people will ask more “intelligent” questions and try to get the bottom of the current goverment system and this is absolutely not deliberatet with the current military style (dictatorship) goverment ,,,,,

  8. Avatar

    indisPC

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 12:43 pm

    Heard it for years.

    “There are tons of jobs in cyber security and AI. People just need to retrain.”

    It’s a PMC illusion.

  9. Avatar

    Michael

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 12:57 pm

    30% occupation in the tourism industry with Thai tourists thanks to economic stimulus campaigns???

    He must be dreaming. Or lying. Or both. Maybe they get 30% during holidays. But that is only a couple of days a year.

    • Avatar

      Joe

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 1:37 pm

      We are going round and round in circles, thanks to the people in charge like this deputy pm with his grand plans,
      Thailand has a massive shortage of skilled and educated labour, most people don’t even speak English, the language that has become even more important in the age of the Internet, and so they are missing out on so much useful information and opportunities which could improve their lives.

  10. Avatar

    Peter

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 1:08 pm

    I think you are all missing the point. This man is warning the country there will be no rush to open up Thailand to mass tourism.
    He is letting the country know that by dangling a different carrot in front of them.
    They are accidentally, or deliberately, going to wipeout, Pattaya, Phuket, Koh Samui and the entertainment areas of lower Sukhumvit in Bangkok.
    Any farangs who have sold up and come to Thailand to make their home and livelihood are finished. Q1 2021 lockdown followed by no opening of the borders, without quarantine, for another year or more.

    • Avatar

      Gosport

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:19 pm

      You maybe right, His speech tells forgetting letting in tourists. Bye bye, long tail boat

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:32 pm

      Why “finished”?

      Plenty of farangs make their “homes and livelihood” here outside “Pattaya, Phuket, Koh Samui and the entertainment areas of lower Sukhumvit in Bangkok”, although that may be the limit of your own experience.

      • Avatar

        Funcy Harold

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:18 pm

        Yes Isan john you are right and they all have the same life as your.You write 20-30 comments a day on the website of the PHUKET newspaper.Spend several hours. Every Daу. Whole year.Unlimited Fun.

        • Avatar

          Issan John

          Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 5:06 pm

          Not “every day” – purely when I’m laid up by an old injury.

          The rest of the time’s rather more “fun”.

    • Avatar

      Joe

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:47 pm

      Don’t take this Peter fellow too seriously, he is obviously very envious of the foreigners who live in Thailand whilst he is stuck in jolly good old England in the middle of winter.

      • Avatar

        Issan John

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 5:10 pm

        I may be wrong, but IIRC he’s not “stuck in England” but in Ireland – and meanwhile others are stuck into his “girlfriend in Roi Et”.

        • Avatar

          Joe

          Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 7:52 pm

          Good one Issan John.

  11. Avatar

    Nipral

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 1:14 pm

    No sensible investor will bet a single Bath on this utterly corrupt country and its military “government”, whatever the industry, in particular real estate. Add the impossibility to get into the country in civilized conditions, social unrest, poorly educated manpower, etc… Tourism used to be an acceptable alternative. It’s over now and for many years to come.

    • Avatar

      Slugger

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:39 pm

      I certainly wont be betting a ‘bath’ on it.

      Ignorant fool.

      • Avatar

        nipral

        Monday, January 4, 2021 at 10:10 am

        to be considered a ignorant fool by a moronic slugger is delightful !

  12. Avatar

    Francis

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:06 pm

    All these dreams… Going to the moon, Covid vaccine…

    Does any one remember “Thailand 4.0” what happened there after the press stoped reporting on it?

    I love Thailand, but I doubt it will ever change it needs “easy money” in other words tourists..

  13. Avatar

    Steve

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:20 pm

    Ah yes, that old refrain from supercilious foreigners that Thais need us more than we need them; that they can’t be retrained for other jobs.

    The epitome of narcissism. The height of paternalism. Imperialist to the core. And ignorant beyond belief. Thai girls from the “entertainment zones” will simply return to the fertile plains of their villages and family farms.

    A quick peruse on their social media accounts show a different story from the perverted foreign narrative. These ‘poor Thai girls’ have mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, nieces, and nephews who fish, plant rice, and raise ducks and chickens. Farmers and fishermen don’t starve. But the foolish foreigners think they do. Lockdown or no lockdown, Thais will be fine. They have a 2,000 year history of self-reliance. It’s foreigners who won’t, taking to social media to complain about not be able to come back. Besides money, I don’t know why the Thai authorities put up with them.

    • Avatar

      Peter

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 3:40 pm

      At last, a bigger idiot than the other destitute baffoon living in Issan.
      Stevie Boy, gives us is first world masters degree politically correct narrative of how Thai’s are oh so self sufficient.
      Well, unfortunately for you and the other clown prince, Penniless John, you just ran into someone who not only knows a farang business perspective but also a girlfriend in Roi Et, Isaan.
      So here’s the reality bozo’s. Will the people of Isaan survive on rice, crabs, frogs and barbaqued rats? Yip, you bet they will.
      Will the monthly payments for cars, motorbikes, mobiles etc still be able to be paid when theirs no money to be made in Bangkok and the tourist areas for their younger generations? You bet it won’t.
      Having been to Roi Et for the rocket festival last June and seeing daily life in Isaan for the last year, trust me the folks in Isaan want the borders open again.
      What they don’t care about is two penniless losers like you, who ended up destitute living in a third world country and haven’t a dime to contribute even to your local village.

      • Avatar

        Steve

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:03 pm

        I see I struck a nerve. I hope the truth didn’t hurt too much. Barbequed rats? This is what you think the Thais eat? Just what Thailand needs; more foreigners who think they are superior. It’s nice to see what you think of Thai people. This is my favourite sentence:

        “What they don’t care about is two penniless losers like you, who ended up destitute living in a third world country and haven’t a dime to contribute even to your local village.”

        FYI: I retired in my late 50s and live in a condo near the beach. I’m hardly penniless. But good try.

        • Avatar

          Geoff

          Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:16 pm

          Steve, I am not involved in your unseemly spat, but, believe me, bbq rat is definitely on the menu for many country folk in Thailand.

          • Avatar

            Peter

            Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 5:02 pm

            Thanks Geoff, argument over.
            Steve go to Issan and see how the people live. Don’t write drivel from a beach front condo.
            You’ve never been to Isaan and haven’t a clue.
            The rice was harvested from the fields a number of months ago. Half kept for family use and the rest sold.
            The harvested fields are fertile ground for frogs and picking crabs.
            Steve, i suggest you stop making a fool of yourself.
            You have just typified the sort of farang you despise. Bravo.
            Beach front condo owner lectures people on how the north of Thailand lives.

          • Avatar

            Issan John

            Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 5:23 pm

            … and while it’s not my preferred dish, it’s actually farmed and a lot more expensive than chicken or pork!

        • Avatar

          Issan John

          Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 5:19 pm

          … and I retired in my mid-30’s, and my dogs’ probably have a more expensive lifestyle than Peter!

          • Avatar

            Steve

            Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 6:58 pm

            “Steve go to Issan and see how the people live. You’ve never been to Isaan and haven’t a clue.”

            You just keep getting it wrong, Peter. I love you for that. Not only have I been to Issan, I lived there several years ago while teaching at an exclusive high school. The students came from middle class and well-off families. Many went on to university and became professionals. I tend not to hang out with the poor folks since I hate it when they ask me for money. My Thai friends are middle class and above. We eat pizza, Korean food, and traditional Thai cuisine. But hey, Peter, if you prefer hanging out with those who dance, eat bbq rats, and beg for money, God bless you. We all have our preferences. Take care.

          • Avatar

            Issan John

            Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 7:13 pm

            OMG.

            So Peter’s not a “successful farang businessman” after all, but a begpacking school teacher who likes to think that his “Thai friends are middle class and above” because they “eat pizza, Korean food, and traditional Thai cuisine.”

            🙂 🙂 🙂

          • Avatar

            Toby Andrews

            Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 11:55 pm

            Wrong brain of Isaan, it is Steve who was the school teacher not Peter.
            It is Steve that has middle class friends not Peter, or maybe he has.
            It is Steve that eats pizza, and Korean food not Peter.
            Read and learn before writing lies and insults.

        • Avatar

          Albert Zweistein

          Monday, January 4, 2021 at 3:41 am

          I can confirm 100 % Thai eat barbequed rats.Believe it or not, up to
          uou.

        • Avatar

          preesy chepuce

          Monday, January 4, 2021 at 6:17 pm

          The measure of cultural superiority is obvious.

          I was once at a UK university when a Thai masters student said to me with a straight face… “you guys don’t have any culture”.

          I pointed out to her, that the entire modern world she lives in, is western culture, and it’s the result, largely of the British Empire, the Industrial Revolution, and the Enlightenment, to name but a few things.

          What is the language of global economics and education? Which are the most important cities in the world? Where do all the laws, and standards in the world come from? They don’t come from Asia, or Africa, or South America. Sure, parts of those continents have made contributions along the way, but they are not amongst the pinnacles of human civilisationm (with the possible exception of Japan).

          I know it’s not fashionable these days to deal in facts, because everybody’s gone wumao or woke (something that traces it’s origins back to the French Revolution), but it’s perhaps time that the banal world is reminded of the blindingly obvious.

      • Avatar

        Issan John

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 5:00 pm

        ” … trust me the folks in Isaan want the borders open again”.

        Like everything else you write, only in your dreams.

        The last thing “the folks in Isaan” want is “the borders open again” unless and until they’re safe from the effects of Covid-19, one way or the other.

        You may think your “girlfriend in Roi Et, Isaan” does, but the reality is that she’d far sooner you just sent her the pittance you and her other farang “boyfriends” give her to support her and her Thai husband and family.

        Why would “the folks in Isaan want the borders open again” when the reality is that those in Isaan get far, far more from the younger generation working in factories in Rayong or in construction than they do from the sex tourists (like you) or the long term expat residents (like me)?

        While foreign tourism undoubtedly contributes around 12% to the Thai economy, maybe even closer to 20% if you include indirect benefit, the idea that much of this finds its way back to “the folks in Isaan” from those in the “entertainment areas” from sex tourists would be funny if it wasn’t so delusional.

        “The folks in Isaan” have been hit by the effects of the Covid pandemic, like every-one else, but they’re far more concerned about the large numbers working in factories and construction hit by reduced demand and reduced OT than they are about the few working in “entertainment areas”, few of whom by comparison actually send money back to Isaan.

        There’s little so delusional as a sex tourist who thinks he’s a saviour, doing everyone a favour.

        • Avatar

          Rasputin

          Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 7:33 pm

          Whilst I disagree with a couple of of your points, there’s a lot of truth in what you have posted, especially on ‘sponsorship’, not wanting the borders opened at the moment, and the delusional sex tourists. I sometimes wonder if they have ever been to Thailand, let alone spent any meaningful time in the rural areas? I think some may have formed their opinions solely from watching YouTube videos.

          • Avatar

            preesy chepuce

            Monday, January 4, 2021 at 6:19 pm

            surely they must have done, for them to be “sex tourists”?

            There are plenty of people who want the borders open, and not just in Thailand, not everyone buys into the whole lockdown & bondage fetish.

        • Avatar

          Andre

          Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 11:35 pm

          Around 10 000 bath a month is what hte girls in Bangkok sends back to mom in Isaan, at least from the mouth of those I know. Income was from 100 000 and higher each month before the corona virus. Think from 5000-10000 a night when they have a client (yes, some japanese are willing to pay 10k for long time and 5k for short time at the best gogos in soi cowboy). Sometimes they manage a long time and a short time on the same day, e.g. long time ends at 1 pm so they reach back to Baccara or whatever other gogo they work in to pick up a new customer before the night ends. Those who have kids also set off about 10 000 to their kid for private school education. Add up some more money from foreign sponsors giving them gifts and sponsoring travels (plane tickets) back to their Isaan city.

          Now with an average factory worker salary between 15 000 to 20 000 there is quite a BIG gap in income here. Some (if not all) of these girls like their livestyle and the money – and I do not think they would like to go back to rice farming or factory work anytime soon.

          • Avatar

            Issan John

            Monday, January 4, 2021 at 1:58 am

            Andre, I’m not doubting what the girls tell you they send home, but that may not actually be what gets transferred – and while I’m sure some of the best girls at “the best go gos in soi cowboy” do very nicely for a while, there aren’t that many of them.

            … and the idea that “an average factory worker salary [is] between 15 000 to 20 000” is way out of date. As a basic starting salary, yes, sometimes, but add in OT, allowances, and an annual bonus of at least a month’s salary, often two, and the take home average will be at least double that – and that’s unskilled or semi-skilled, and guaranteed every month.

            Peter’s talking about keeping up the monthly payments on “cars and motorbikes” for family in Isaan; that’s no problem for those in a factory with pay statements, deducted at source by the Toyota dealer – but not quite so easy for someone working in Soi Cowboy.

            I’m not suggesting for a second that the girls (or boys) “would like to go back to rice farming or factory work anytime soon”, and I agree with you that many “like their livestyle and the money” – my point’s simply that the money they make (and lifestyle they enjoy) doesn’t keep rural Thailand ticking over as the Thai saviour / sex-tourists imagine.

    • Avatar

      preesy chepuce

      Monday, January 4, 2021 at 6:09 pm

      They really do… and the Thais that have done PhDs abroad, know it, and say it a lot… it’s not a “perverted foreign narrative”, and you sound like a wumao.

      They don’t have a “2,000 year history of self-reliance”, Thais didn’t live in modern-day “Thailand” 2,000 years ago, their Lao ancestors migrated south from Guangxi about 8th century AD, around the time of the Vikings in Britain.

      All you’re talking about is subsistence agriculture, and yes, my Thai relatives live in a smallholding and eat off the land, but they can’t afford much else. They aspire to cars, nice houses, high-quality jobs, and and a higher quality-of-life, and to acheive that they need education, and even CCP China recognises that the best education systems are still mainly in “farang” countries… USA, UK, Switzerland, Canada, Australia, Germany, etc…
      Why shouldn’t young Thais get to study abroad, and why shouldn’t they get foreign educators given proper pay and easier visa systems to bring them to Thailand to help young Thais reach their potential to be able to study abroad? You want them all to stay in their bucolic paddy fields forever to prove some silly nationalistic point?

  14. Avatar

    Issan John

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:35 pm

    So he’s repeated exactly the same after dinner speech he made two weeks ago … even down to the EVs.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 5:45 pm

      … and talking of people making fools of themselves, Peter, while some collect frogs and rats from the fields themselves and “free range” is more expensive, frogs and rats are farmed here, just like chickens or pigs.

      It’s not a diet of poverty as it’s more expensive than chicken or pork, but a diet of choice (albeit not mine).

  15. Avatar

    Issan John

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 2:42 pm

    I can’t understand why Thailand should want to “further invest in community power plants, as well as biomass and solar power plants in Laos”.

    Why invest in biomass and solar power plants IN LAOS”?

    What’s wrong with doing so in Thailand? Isn’t there enough sun here???

    • Avatar

      Donny

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 3:34 pm

      Simply because it’s easier, they don’t have to figure out how a power plant works, and they can blame the people in Laos if it doesn’t work 😉
      Thai people don’t like to lose face…

      • Avatar

        Issan John

        Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 5:51 pm

        Actually, Donny, they already have plenty of solar power plants here already, all working very well.

  16. Avatar

    Issan John

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 3:28 pm

    “Thai girls from the “entertainment zones” will simply return to the fertile plains of their villages and family farms.”

    Have you ever been to Isaan, where most of them come from?

    Many don’t have “family farms” and their villages aren’t in the “fertile plains” – that’s why they left!

    “A quick peruse on their social media accounts show a different story from the perverted foreign narrative.”

    Really? You have access to their social media accounts, do you?

    There’s a lot of truth in what you say, but equally a great deal of utter crap.

    “They have a 2,000 year history of self-reliance.”

    They also have a 2,000 year history of slavery and being kept in poverty by a rigid hierarchy, determined to preserve the status quo at any cost.

    Tourism played no small part in changing that, alongside education.

  17. Avatar

    Issan John

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 3:55 pm

    Thailand has everything mass tourism wants and needs: the climate, the culture, the variety, the people, the geography, even the infrastructure.

    There’s no possible justification for not making the most of that, to everyone’s benefit, unless the disadvantages outweigh the advantages – and the only possible disadvantage has to be the tourists themselves rather than any contrived economic reason.

  18. Avatar

    Steve

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:19 pm

    “Have you ever been to Isaan, where most of them come from?”

    Yes.

    “You have access to their social media accounts, do you?”

    Since when do you need access to someone’s social media account if they have “friended” you? It is possible to see someone’s page without befriending them.

    “Many don’t have “family farms” and their villages aren’t in the “fertile plains” – that’s why they left!”

    No. They left for better opportunities, but because of the selfishness of many Issan parents, many of these girls ended up in bars sexually servicing men like you. It is that kind of life that you don’t want changed, hence your defensive reply.

    You can believe that you and your money saved these girls all you want. It is your fantasy, after all. But it doesn’t fool me. And neither does it fool the Thais.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 7:02 pm

      Ummm …. I think you’ve got your commenters in a twist somehow, Steve.

      “Yes”, of course they left for “better opportunities” – I’ve just said that too!

      Whether that was because they had “selfish parents”, or their parents weren’t from the “fertile plains” or didn’t have “family farms” is a different matter, though. The idea of happy peasants living a life of happy “self-reliance” for “2,000 years” is just a tad uninformed, at best.

      … and I think you must have got me mixed up with @Peter with the idea that “you and your money saved all these girls, etc” as that’s the polar opposite of what I’ve said, very clearly, here and elsewhere.

      I honestly don’t know which is funnier –

      … you in your condo by the beach with the idea that apart from “selfish parents” everyone in Isaan’s been happily living a life of “self-reliance” for 2,000 years until the sex tourists came along and tempted them away …

      … or Peter in his shed by a bog with his idea that everyone in Isaan was living off the land until he and the sex tourists came along and saved them all.

  19. Avatar

    luca

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:47 pm

    the deputy premier’s speech sounds like classic propaganda, it draws on the racist sentiments of many Thais, the reality I think will be different, the Thai economy cannot give up 60 billion dollars in foreign currency so easily, with the world economy in recession i emerging countries like Thailand will suffer more than western economies, probably in 2022 they will reopen their borders but what can they offer to potential tourists? Will the bhat resist or devalue as in the early 2000s? The future of tourism in Thailand is uncertain not because the vice premier declares it but because the world has changed

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 7:24 pm

      I have to agree, luca, racism dressed up as economics.

      But given the comments here, from Steve by the beach who wants everything back to “self-reliance” and the way it was 2,000 years ago, to the other extreme of Peter by the bog who thinks that sex tourists have been Thailand’s saviours who’ll rescue the economy, who can blame him?

  20. Avatar

    Ian

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:54 pm

    Looks like the last nail is going in the tourist coffin and ready for the burn so sad
    Any last words
    Yes please Thai government grow a pair and realise your mistakes but I have realised in my time in Thailand thais don’t say sorry and like to lose face

  21. Avatar

    Bill Fischer

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 7:52 pm

    A new twist on an old saying: When the going gets tough… Thais give up.

  22. Avatar

    crispy

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 7:56 pm

    Seems unwise to turn your nose up at a success story. No reason is given – presumably this particular deputy PM is concerned that tourists bring infection. But it is probably his anti-falang prejudice.
    Facts are that successful economies are open economies. And the infection was brought in by some foreigners, but it is mainly Thais returning on the back roads from Burma. (And what were they doing there?)
    It is just this guy’s Thai petty racism.

  23. Avatar

    Politenessman

    Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 8:01 pm

    The military think they can just run a command economy, it never goes well and to have any chance of getting what they want Thai universities have to get serious (as does the rest of the education system) but that won’t bear fruit for a decade, meanwhile what do they do with all the low skilled people and those in the tourism related service industries?

    Disaster in the making IMO.

  24. Avatar

    Simple Math

    Monday, January 4, 2021 at 12:53 am

    Farang 1: I think things are so and so.
    Farang 2: You idiot. Things are quite the opposite.
    Farang 1: You are a moron. You are a sex tourist.
    Farang 2. You are pathetic. I am married with two kids. You are a cheap Charlie and you don`t know anything about Thailand.
    Farang 1: I live in a palace on the beach and you live in a dirty village with your wife who is a prostitute. And so on and on and on…

    This is you guys, fighting:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yFMq-2k7tQY

    No wonder people like this fellow above can walk all over you in Thailand.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Monday, January 4, 2021 at 2:06 am

      The “fellow above” is the Deputy PM. Things may be different on your planet, but on this one Deputy PMs tend to have a bit more sway in their own country than foreign visitors.

      • Avatar

        Simple Math

        Monday, January 4, 2021 at 3:11 pm

        There was one tourist from a certain Middle Eastern country visiting a city in Europe. A certain Middle Eastern visitor in that city, from a country that dislikes that certain Middle Eastern country where our tourist comes from, punched our tourist in the face. The foreign minister of that European country apologized to the tourist for the incident. The moral of the story: some tourists have a lot of sway, while others have none.

  25. Avatar

    James R

    Monday, January 4, 2021 at 4:48 am

    I don’t see the problem, they are not relying on tourism that much.

    10% of jobs rely on tourism, which means 90% does not.

    2/3 of Thailand’s GDP is from exports.

    Many countries have had big losses due to the lack of tourists example :

    “Britains tourist income is 10% of its GDP.

    Britain tourism industry worth over £257 billion”

    I have never heard of anyone talking about it in the UK as there is nothing to be done about it until the virus is exterminated to an effective level.

    • Avatar

      preesy chepuce

      Monday, January 4, 2021 at 6:21 pm

      It doesn’t work like that… amongst that 90% there is trickledown from tourism. convenience stores, malls, transport, car hire, repair, manufacture, so many other industries get something out of it. Depends on definitions.

  26. Avatar

    James R

    Tuesday, January 5, 2021 at 2:04 am

    preesy

    The same as everywhere else in the world with a tourist industry it seems so my comment stands.

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